Sunday, August 31, 2014

Bountiful Harvest

We have way too may grapes for just making jam this year and I haven't figured out how to make wine so I tried this recipe for Grape Ketchup which tastes more like a BBQ sauce to me...pretty good.  It's in one of her cookbooks but she also has it at the link above on her website.  I own both her cookbooks and I think they are great for small batch variety for our family of three. 
The other jars are a pickled banana pepper recipe in one of her cookbooks, they are supposed to sit 48 hours, so I can't comment on taste for them yet.
We are doing really well in the cantaloupe department also this year!!
I did get some sewing done last night but it is secret sewing that can't be shown until later in September, so no peeks today!
Have a great Sunday :)

Friday, August 29, 2014

We Break into Normal Scheduled Programming....

To show you this!!!

 Found this sweet little thing (1931 Singer)  at the flea market today and, followed me home...
I had to bring her home, just had to...I am so going to convert this to a hand crank machine...yay!  oh yay!!!
She is a bit grungey and her case needs some repair and the motor and wiring looks kind of scary...perfect candidate for a hand crank conversion  :)

Now how am I going to ignore her long enough to finish the 3 Doctor Who blocks I have left to do...oh what is a girl to do????

Tooth and Claw

This is the 17th block in my Doctor Who paper pieced quilt journey...the pattern for this one can be found here:  at Soma's site.

This was another "must-make" block as it is from one of my son's favorite episodes, Tooth and ClawSuch a good thing it was one of Soma's as well...

We are down to the last 3, my friends, almost there!! 

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Doctor Who Quilt Blocks so far...

I apologize for the poor quality picture, as this gets bigger it gets tougher to get a good shot and the wind really wanted to carry a few of the blocks away as I was trying!!  I am a little surprised the wind was able to move them as they all still have the paper attached and are ahem...thick..
A few of my kind readers had asked to see what my son's Doctor Who Quilt Top blocks looked like together, and, as we are nearing the end (4 MORE TO GO!!) this is getting to be an impressive grouping.  Many thanks, really!! huge gratitude!! to the designers for making this quilt possible for me to make for him!!  You don't often get to be a rock star to your teenage son ;)  (hmmm...obviously, my words not his, lol!!)

All but one of these patterns are free and can be found at these sites:

Wednesday, August 27, 2014


So I am now down to the last 4 blocks after completing the 16th block Gallifrey (pattern at Soma's here: struggled a bit with this one as I had a fat quarter I wanted to use for the background but about a third of the fabric was in dark purples and I really wanted the yellows and oranges with just a touch of the purple...

My connection is sketchy tonight so I will just say Happy Sewing to you and sign off here :)

Monday, August 25, 2014

Hello Sweetie!!

This is the 15th block in my son's Doctor Who quilt, the pattern can be found at Soma's site here:

This is representing an ancient rune message from River Song to the Doctor..."Hello Sweetie!!"

I really thought I would hate making this block with so many little pieces but found it went together rather well and let me use up most of the little background scraps I had laying around from previous blocks...that Soma...brilliant, I tell you :)

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Time Lord

So, this is the 14th block in the Doctor Who quilt I'm putting together for my son...

Did I put a bit too much "personality" into the gown?  I have stayed with mostly muted masculine prints in this quilt and I think I might have rebelled a bit too much with this one...not looking forward to doing a redo but I am interested in how my son reacts to this one...he hasn't seen it yet...
You can find Soma's pattern here:

6 more to go...not that I'm counting...What did you all think of the new Doctor?

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Scarf for the 4th Doctor

I am happy to report that the 13th block for my son's Doctor Who quilt is now done...hmmmm...that means only 7 more to go!!!
This block is in honor of my first Doctor, Tom son has not seen many episodes with the 4th Doctor but he liked what little he saw enough to buy a similar scarf at a fall festival last year so I think this is a good block to include :)
Psssst....don't tell but I "cheated" on the fringe...there were so many pieces it made my eyes cross so I did some simplification by using just a, it's not as wonderful as Caroline's version but I have maintained my sanity to move on to the next block...hopefully the boy won't notice!!

Friday, August 22, 2014

The Iconic Sonic Screwdriver

I am chugging along on the paper pieced Doctor Who quilt for my son, and I have finished yet another block...yay!!
The pattern can be found from Caroline here.  Many thanks to David Butler aka Parson Grey for the awesome timey wimey wibbley wobbly looking fabric!!

Here are all 12 done so far, in no particular order...

So, an apple a day keeps the doctor away...what does a Doctor Who block a day do for you?  Keeps the teen son off your back, lol!!  

Ah, really though he has actually been pretty patient but he has been coming home from soccer practice nightly to peek in my sewing room to see which block has been done.  

We had a negotiating session last night on which blocks were to be done to complete the 20 planned...I have made a couple of substitutions to the ones provided in the original QAL so changes had to be made...I now have a list of what 8 I need to make to complete my top.  Allons-y!!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

A Crack in Time

I am still making good progress on my Doctor Who quilt for my is my finished version of Caroline's pattern, A Crack in Time...

In the episode where the Doctor encounters this crack in Amy's wall he tells her that he will be back in 5 minutes and then returns 12 years later...hopefully this will not be the fate of me finishing this quilt top!!!

I looked to see when I started making these blocks and I finished the Tardis on May 8th it's been awhile but we are far from 12 years yet... 

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

A Doctor needs his Chucks

So my son's Doctor Who quilt now has a fez and bowtie block for Doctor 11 but I needed to nod to Doctor 10 as well so I found this perfect Converse shoe pattern by Kristy aka Quiet Play and gave it a red re-do...

How fitting that this is the 10th block I have now finished for the quilt!!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014


I have been paper piecing again this week as I work through the blocks needed to make a Doctor Who themed quilt for my son.

This will be a familiar figure to those who watch Doctor Who...this is definitely my favorite baddie...who can resist a trashcan with a superiority complex?

When added to these below, I now have 9 blocks done!!

The fantastic and very detailed pattern can be found here at Soma's blog, if you are up for a challenge:

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Another Doctor Who Block, Yay For Progress!

So this was a pretty easy block to make, especially as I sized it up from the original 5 inches...I thought I needed a Logo block for my quilt and liljabs pattern does quite nicely...
This is block number 8 so I guess that means on to block number 9!!
Here is a look at what I have pieced so far...
I am beginning consider layout options, I have been using a lot of either really light or really dark backgrounds so I will need to ponder my choices carefully...
BTW...this is my 250th blog post, crazy!!!  Thanks for taking the time to visit my little space in blog-land, you all constantly make my day :)

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Paper Piecing Dave...or...Hey, Who Turned Out the Lights?

So I am slowly crawling to the finish line with my Doctor Who Paper Pieced quilt and Soma's Vashta Nerada pattern was next on the list...

For those who have no clue what I am talking about, suffice it to say that this poor guy becomes a villain in the episode "Silence in the Library".  Probably enough spoilers for you, eh?

This block pattern is genius by Soma, so many great details here, and me...well, I only took a few wrong turns so it turned out pretty good and definitely has the creepy vibe...teenager approved, on to the next block! 
I really think this qualifies as the creepiest thing that I have 'bout you all?  What has been your creepiest make?

Friday, August 8, 2014

A Bit of Hand Applique

I was fortunate to luck into a last minute cancellation for a class with Becky Goldsmith yesterday
It was on her methods and tips for hand applique and included the pattern for the lower right bird block.  The full quilt pattern is here if you are interested.

It was a good class, I use fusible applique much more often than needle turn but was happy to learn some new tricks on how to make pointy points and she had a very interesting technique for making templates involving laminate.  She also talked up finger pressing rather than ironing and starch which I will admit worked well in class and is a much less involved prep.  She has many of her lessons posted to her blog here if you would like to check out the techniques.

She also told us that we should definitely absolutely prewash all our fabrics...which I have never done...not sure I have it in me to wash the "stash"...hmmmmm...

On an extra happy note, my friend Liz also got a last minute spot in the class and it was great to get a visit in with her :)

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Because Bow Ties and Fez are cool...

First, a note to all non- Doctor Who Fans, sorry this post will make little sense...

I have re-committed my efforts at finishing a Doctor Who quilt for my son who has been waiting for quite awhile.  Those who know me are aware of my blatant tendency to start new projects and let my older ones go without prompt finishes.  But this one is in queue and I am redoubling my here is the second block this week finished :)

This is a pattern by Lilja which can be found here.  It is a 5" pattern but I doubled it's size and added a border so that it will match my other 12 inch blocks.  I had an easy time with this one, yay!

I really had to have a Fez and Bow Tie block in this quilt because...

a. My son really digs 11's fascination with bow ties and fez and not so secretly wants both for himself.
b. My Grandma was married to a Shriner with a you GrandDad!!   :) 

Here are some pictures of the girls devouring the boatsize squash that keep showing up in our garden...

Have a great Thursday my friends!

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

River's Diary

So here I go again pursuing my love/hate journey with paper piecing...hmmm....yes, I think I can safely say my blocks tend to come out with "character"... just keeping it real, my friends :)

I present today a somewhat wonky version of Caroline's pattern.

So I think I may have pieced one or more of the sections upside down (for those with a need to know...I believe the fault is with the front cover portion but by the time I figured that out I was feeling a bit feisty) and purely through ornery attitude or stubbornness...I made it turn into a 12 inch block anyway.

This is purely a reflection on my skill as her pattern is excellent and there have been many made without mishap, I believe.  I checked with the boy and he has approved it so I think I will continue on to the next block for now...

Here is a picture of my black-eyed susans enjoying this rather foggy morning...hope you all are enjoying today as well!  Happy Wednesday to you!

Monday, August 4, 2014

Getting Back to "it"

I promised my son a Doctor Who quilt...

I have even done a few blocks..

But not nearly now that he is back in school, I shall begin again...

These patterns can be found on Soma's and Caroline's blogs...along with many others I have yet to tackle.

I decided to dip my toes back into paper piecing with a pattern from the College Blog Hop Soma hosted called Chemistry...I think it goes well with the backpack block I designed for the hop.

For some reason I managed to print it out 7 inches square on my printer instead of 10 and so it is a bit small...I am going to border it and use it as-is though in a someday quilt.  Thanks to Lilja and Soma for a kickstart back into paper piecing and a fun nostalgic block.  

I remember early morning Freshman Chem lab being a sleepy place.  I managed to spill a bit of acid on my jeans one day that gave me quite a surprise when I washed them in the laundry and found swiss cheese holes!!

Hope your August is off to a good start!!